Friday, July 23, 2010

A Salute To The Unknown Bad Dancer

When I saw this episode as a kid, I was mostly fixated on Potsie's poor singing and the weird new Arnold's set (just before Ron Howard left, Garry Marshall ordered Arnold's burned down so the set could be rebuilt in a style that '80s kids could relate to). Now I'm fixated on something else: the uncredited guy in the blue sweater, whose dancing is prominently featured in this clip. It may be the worst dancing I've ever seen on a TV show, except for dancing that is intentionally supposed to be terrible. I guess it's possible that Jerry Paris told him to dance that way to add some comedy to the scene, but it doesn't really come off; it's just bad spastic hair-coiffing dancing.

But he dances so badly with so much enthusiasm that he's almost a predecessor of Jeff from Mr. T's "Be Somebody Or Be Somebody's Fool." Never have I found it more unfair that a show could get away with not crediting someone if it didn't give him any lines. This man deserves to have his name, and his shame, preserved for posterity.


Steve said...

Disturbing. And yet, I am drawn to watch it again. It's almost hypnotic. I have spent a sleepless night wondering how Mr. Blue Sweater got there in the first place. I have come up with 5 theories:

5. He was pulled out of the line for Soul Train because he had the right look for 1962... a blow-dry.

4. He was told to draw attention away from the fact that if this is 1962 why do none of the girls have a Jackie or a Flip.

3. He was told to draw attention away from the fact that Ron Howard is starting to look like my dad.

2. "But Uncle Jerry, you promised you'd get me a big part."

and the number one theory:

Blue sweater... can't... look away. I... must... obey.

Ivan G Shreve Jr said...

It's like, to quote another famous sitcom, dry heaves set to music.

Anonymous said...

Blue sweater dude is also wearing pants that are nearly bell bottoms, which wouldn't have been worn in public by anyone other than sailors in 1962.